By Maureen Honey
The New Woman-an self sustaining, nontraditional, often career-minded lady for whom marriage and kin have been secondary-became a well-liked heroine in women’s journal fiction from the time of global conflict I during the Twenties. in this interval, American tradition entertained a brand new, feminist imaginative and prescient of gender roles that helped pave the way in which for contemporary photographs of ladies in public job. The tales during this assortment are drawn from the largest periodicals of the day-Ladies’ domestic magazine, Cosmopolitan, sturdy home tasks, Woman’s domestic significant other, and McCall’s-as good because the African-American journal The concern. every one tale is rooted in a few size of latest feminism and explores a subject matter of constant significance, equivalent to unity between ladies, the lives of girls of colour and working-class ladies, sexual harassment, lesbian love, family members and marital bonds, and women’s relation to paid employment.
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Additional resources for Breaking the Ties That Bind: Popular Stories of the New Woman, 1915-1930
I wish to acknowledge, too, those few people willing to look at women's magazines in a serious and scholarly way: Theodore Peterson, Frank Luther Mott, Leila Rupp, William O'Neill, Lillian Faderman, Betty Friedan, and Barbara Welter. All have contributed to the recognition of mass magazines as important carriers of American ideology about women. Finally, I must recognize the ground-breaking work of Nancy F. Cott, Rosalind Rosenberg, and Elaine Showalter, who have revised our views of the women's rights movement and the 1920s to include a more balanced assessment of their long-lasting effects.
New Woman stories refused to sacrifice automatically the heroine's love of her work to the need for love and companionship. If she were forced to compromise either, it was a sad sign that the times were not yet enlightened enough to recognize the human requirement for both.
Racism pervaded mainstream women's magazines both in content and in the exclusion of nonwhite writers. Narrative subjugation of minorities into subordinate roles occurred regularly, and stories that did feature ethnic characters relied on racist stereotypes of the white-identified Indian maiden, the exotic "Oriental," or the tragic mulatto who longs to join white society. " (1917), the subservient portrait of an Asian servant in "Call of the House" (1926), the lack of concern with apartheid in "Half a Million" (1928), and the absence of African-Americans from urban, working-class districts portrayed in "Amy Brooks'' (1927) and "Eve Goes On'' (1928).